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Shin Bet arrests 'Hamas cell' over policeman killing

July 19, 2010 12:21 P.M. (Updated: July 20, 2010 3:31 P.M.)
Bethlehem - Ma'an/Agencies - Israel's security services revealed Monday that it recently detained members of an alleged Hamas military wing suspected of involvement in the shooting death of an Israeli police officer last month.

The Shin Bet made the announcement after a gag order on the case was lifted, the Israeli daily Haaretz reported.

According to the security services, detentions were made in village of Deir Samet six days after Yehoshua Sofer, 39, was shot dead on 14 June in Hebron on an officer transport from Beer Sheva.

During interrogation, the suspects reportedly said they were members of the Al-Aqsa Martyrs' Brigades - Imad Mughniyeh Group, established last year.

However, it is unclear how the ties to Hamas were made, as the group's moniker suggests affiliation with Fatah. According to Haaretz, the Shin Bet believes the members of the cell were from various groups.

Four members of the group allegedly took part in the attack that killed Sofer, with one reportedly serving as a lookout while the three others sat in a car at the side of the road in order to open fire on the passing police vehicle, the daily wrote.

The Shin Bet said the suspects re-enacted the attack and also handed over the rifles they were using at the time.
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